Placement Testing


General Information

Options for English and Math placement testing are available for current and prospective students during our current campus closure.  Please contact for further information or to schedule your exam.

Placement testing is required for enrollment in courses that have English, math or reading prerequisites. Results indicate where you should begin course work in these areas and which prerequisites you have already met.

Placement testing is free, and no appointment is necessary. You may take a placement test any time during the Testing Center’s hours. Allow yourself two hours to complete the entire test (reading, writing and math) or 30-45 minutes for individual portions of the evaluation.

SFCC uses ACCUPLACER as its primary placement tool. ACCUPLACER is a computer-adaptive test that asks between 12 and 20 questions to determine appropriate placement in each subject area. Test results are available immediately.

Placement Test Preparation

The results of your placement test will determine which English and math courses you can take and whether you meet English and math prerequisites for other courses.  It is important, therefore, that you take the exam seriously and do your very best.  We strongly encourage you to visit the Accuplacer preparation page prior to testing. This page contains links to practice questions that address each section of the Accuplacer, designed by the College Board, the organization which sponsors the test.

PrepSTEP is an online test preparation program offered FREE through the SFCC Library.  It has preparation resources for many exams including excellent materials to help students prepare for the ACCUPLACER placement exam.  To register, create your personal login and get started, visit the PrepSTEP Website.  

Additional FREE preparation material can be found on the following websites:

Study guides for each of the test sections are available from Aims Community College here.

Study guides and video tutorials for the math sections are available from the Community College of Aurora here and a study guide for the Sentence Skills is also available from CCA here.

Several excellent general math review sites are available on the Web and include:

Placement Testing for Distance Education Students

To ensure the integrity of students’ test scores and the security of ACCUPLACER tests, students are not permitted to take the ACCUPLACER exam without the presence and supervision of an approved proctor.  Distance learning students who will not be taking any courses on the SFCC campus and who cannot come to the Testing Center to take their placement exams will need to arrange for testing by an approved proctor at a college or university in their area.  Any proctoring fees charged by the local institution are the student’s responsibility.

1.  Before arranging to take the placement exam, complete the online SFCC application for admission.  When you complete the application you will be assigned an SFCC student ID number, what we call an “A number.”  You will need to use your A number when you sign in to your placement exam.

2.  Contact the SFCC Testing Center at 505-428-1625 to verify whether or not you are eligible for remote placement testing.

3.  After speaking with the SFCC Testing Center, contact the testing center of a college or university in your area to request that they proctor the ACCUPLACER exam for you.  It is NOT necessary for that institution to be an ACCUPLACER user.  To be approved as a proctor, a testing center representative must have an e-mail address and access to the Internet.

4.  Have the proctor complete the SFCC Proctor Security Agreement and fax it to the SFCC Testing Center at 505-428-1280.

5.  After receiving the completed Proctor Security Agreement, SFCC will provide the designated proctor with a password and instructions for administering the ACCUPLACER exam.

6.  Take the test at the date and time you have arranged with the proctor.

7.  Contact the SFCC Testing Center at 505-428-1625 to let us know when you have completed your test.  After you contact the Center, your scores will be entered into the SFCC database, and you will be able to discuss your scores with an academic advisor and register for classes.

Proctor Eligibility Criteria

  • Proctors must be responsible adults familiar with accepted practices for administering standardized tests.
  • Proctors may not be peers, friends or co-workers of the student.
  • Proctors may not be related to the student.
  • Proctors must have no vested interest in students’ scores.
  • Proctors may not participate in any coaching activities that address the content of the ACCUPLACER exam.
  • Proctors must be authorized by SFCC to proctor exams in an off-campus location.

Spanish Placement

These tests are for students who need to know at what level to start the Spanish course sequence. Tests are offered for both Spanish as a Second Language and Heritage Spanish. The Spanish placement test is free of charge and can be taken without an appointment at the Testing Center during business hours. It is an un-timed test of 45 questions, and is computer-based. If you score at least 40 out of 45 correctly, a second test will open for you to take. The second test has 90 questions and is also un-timed.


Recent ACT or SAT scores may be used to determine placement. If you score a 19 or higher on the ACT English and Reading sections or a 450 or higher on the SAT Critical Reading section, you may enroll in English 111 or any course for which English 109 is a prerequisite. In some cases, you may still be required to write an essay.

If you score from 16-23 on the ACT Math section or from 400-590 on the SAT Mathematics section you may enroll in MATH 109 (Intermediate Algebra). If you score 24 or higher on the ACT Math section or 600 or higher on the SAT Mathematics section, you may enroll in MATH 121 (College Algebra), MATH 135 (Probability and Statistics) or MATH 150 (Pre-Calculus).

Scores from tests taken more than three years ago cannot be used for placement purposes.

Students may also provide unofficial transcripts showing math and English courses completed within the last three years. These courses can sometimes be used to determine placement.